Associations in the Greco-Roman World (AGRW)

An expanding collection of inscriptions, papyri, and other sources in translation (run by Philip A. Harland)

Grave of a Dionysiac Initiate and Performer (155 CE) Amastris - Pontus

Amastris (Pontus, Asia Minor — Pleiades map), 155 CE
AGRW 93 = GRA 97 = C.P. Jones, "Lucian and the Bacchants of Pontus," Echos du monde classique / Classical Views 9 (1990) 53-63 = SEG 35 (1985), no. 1327 = Marek 1993, 157–187, at 168–69 (no. 44) = PHI 265443 = AGRW ID# 34


Large marble base with upper moulding (131 x 65 x 48 cm; letter height: 2 cm).

It was now my thirtieth year.  My father named me Aemilianus.  Geminos, a man of the nobility, brought me up.  In the presence of burning incense (or: burnt offerings), I led the band of revellers mystically in the rite for the triennial god Euios (i.e. Dionysos).  I was also revered in the gymnasia and experienced in wrestling, javelin–throwing, kick–boxing (pankration), discus–throwing, circular racing (or: using a hoop), jumping, and all rhythmic ball playing, each of which my foster–father taught me.  I won with a (10) satyr play (or: satyr dance) at Kyzikos and Pergamon.  At Kyzikos I myself won the crown, but at Pergamon cruel fate carried off the crown.  Misfortune withered my body on Dorian soil, but Geminos my foster–father, carrying my bones to my homeland, placed them into a stone chest which was adorned with eternal crowns.  Year 225, one before the Kalends of September (= 31 August), which is Loos 17.

Translation by: Harland

ἔτος μὲν ἦν τριακοστὸν ἤδη μοι τόδε, | ἔθηκε δ’ Αἰμιλιανὸν ὄνομά μοι πατήρ, | ὃν ἔθρεψε Γέμινος, εἷς ἀνὴρ τῶν εὐγενῶν· | παρ’ ἐμπύροις δὲ κῶμον Εὐΐῳ θεῷ || τριετῆρι τελετὴν μυστικῶς ἀνήγαγον | καὶ γυμνασίων δὲ σεμνὸς ἐγενόμην, ἴδρις | πάλης, ἄκοντος, πανκρατίου, δίσκου, τρόχου, | ἅλματος, ἁπάντων εὐρυθμῶν σφαιρισμάτων | ὧν εἰς ἕκαστον ἐπόνεσεν τροφεὺς ἐμός, || σατύρῳ τε ἐνείκων Κύζικον καὶ Πέργαμον | καὶ Κυζίκου μὲν αὐτὸς ἤνεγκα στέφος, | τὸ Περγάμου δὲ μοῖρα ἀπήνεγκεν πικρὰ | καί μου τὸ σῶμα Δωρίας ἐπὶ χθονὸς | ἐμάρανε δαίμων, ὀστᾶ δ’ ἐν πάτρῃ λαβὼν || τροφεὺς Γέμινος λάρνακα ἐς λιθίνην θέτο | αἰωνίοις στεφάνοισιν ἐπικοσμούμενα. | εκςʹ πρὸ αʹ καλ(ανδῶν) Σεπτεμβρίων, | Λώου ζιʹ.

Item added: March 1, 2011
Item modified: December 3, 2015
ID number: 34
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